I wish in the fantasy realm in which I live in that I could somehow taken credit for this. The head of the NCAA digital department Ronnie Ramos got in a fight with Mike DeCourcy (of Sporting News fame) and Marc Isenberg (Columnist for several major outlets) on the mean streets of Twitter, and Ramos didn’t win.
The battle of wits began with Ramos saying it was okay for Missy Franklin, Olympian and hopeful NCAA swimming participant, to receive “gifts” from the icon that is Justin Bieber (Oh man, I wish I was making this stuff up). In came DeCourcy and Isenberg searching for some clarity as to some of the “finer” NCAA rules. Just read, trust me:
Mike DeCourcy (tweeting @RonnieRamos): “Cute, but seems a double standard. OJ Mayo getting game tickets from Carmelo ruled a violation. Would it be still?”
What follows is a great example of NCAA dysfunction. In tweets. Plus, I add my own comments.
Ronnie Ramos (@RonnieRamos): “point is Bieber routinely gives gifts to fans. Extra benefit rule applies if someone gets something cuz they are student-athlete.”
Mike DeCourcy (@TSNMike): “Don’t think I’m going too far out on a limb to suggest Carmelo routinely gives away comp tickets.”
Marc Isenberg (@MarcIsenberg): But OJ Mayo and Carmelo Anthony play basketball, so something must be sinister.
Ronnie Ramos: “i believe tix to pro games falls under a different bylaw.”
Ronnie Ramos: “SA can’t accept free tix unless such services also are available to the student body in general.”
Marc Isenberg: If someone from the “student body” has a friend in the NBA, he would probably get free tickets too. The reality is D-I players all have friends who play in the NBA. If the NCAA enforced this rule, we’d probably have to shut down college basketball for a few weeks.
Ronnie Ramos: “FWIW, did a quick online search and did not see any reports of Carmelo routinely giving tix away pre 2008, when Mayo got tix.”
Mike DeCourcy: “Because it wouldn’t be news. Players have friends in the cities where they play, they give them tix. In every pro sport.”
Marc Isenberg: I guarantee Ramos that Carmelo and every other NBA player provides free tickets to youth groups too.
Ronnie Ramos: “that would be an extra benefit because they are student athletes, not just fans; that is difference in Bieber case.”
Mike DeCourcy: “You don’t think a college basketball player can be a fan of NBA basketball?”
Ronnie Ramos: “of course. point was the extra benefit rule and who has access to that benefit.”
Mike DeCourcy: “but isn’t it reasonable to assume b-ball people meet b-ball people, just as Olympic heroes get asked about favorite singers?”
Yes, that’s extremely funny. To give Ramos a little credit, he is only in charge of the fingers at the NCAA. Okay, fine, he’s in charge of the world-wide-NCAA-interweb.
I’m not going to re-bash the NCAA for all of it’s ineptness, I’m sure I will again soon, so if you’d like to read what I think of the latest fiasco just click right…..HERE!
Joe covers the Catholic Seven for Rant Sports. For the love of Sam Cassell, follow Joe on the Twitter Machine @JosephNardone